Friday, May 3, 2013

Mrs. Bufkins-All Dressed Up, Ozark Style & How I Made Her Bonnet

Mrs. Bufkins, wearing her favorite
summer sun dress and straw bonnet, is on the 
way to market to purchase some seeds for her
flower beds and garden.  She has spring fever.
Her cartridge pleated sundress is hand stitched
from a mid 1800's reproduction calico print in
green and chrome yellow with a touch of orange.
 (Icky colors, but they look lovely against
her green skin!)

She has antique shoe button eyes
and antique orange china buttons.
Mrs. Bufkins loves bonnets and never goes
outdoors without one.  A lady must protect
her face from over exposure to the sun.
 Her hand stitched bonnet is decorated with
vintage composition berries, velvet leaves
and her favorite flower, the Carabella rose, that
 grow wild in the woods near her burrow.
Mrs. Bufkins is made from wool with ultra suede
paws pads and inner ears.
Mrs. Bufkins is 14 inches tall including
her 4 in. ears & fully jointed.
  NEWS FLASH...............
I stitched her body on the machine!
How did I make her straw bonnet?
I started by making a tin foil bonnet in 2
pieces, the brim and the crown.
It was difficult to work around those ears.
I used a soup can and placed some
Sculpey Polymer Clay on the bottom and baked it
according to the package directions.
This gave me a sturdy base to work with.
This is the mold I made for the curved brim.
I rolled out the clay with a small rolling pin
and used a larger can to cut out the circle.  I
am not a sculptor so it looks terrible and I'm
fairly sure I over baked it, but it worked!
I started on the outside of the brim working toward
the center, stopping at the black line.  This gave
me a curved brim with a large circular opening.
This was cute just by itself but, I really wanted a
high crown between the ears.
This is the mold for the long narrow crown shape. 
 Here are links to the natural straw hat braid, glue
and prior post on straw hat making.
Natural Italian Straw Braid

Hat Glue

Straw Hat Tutorial
I dyed the natural straw braid with Rit dye tan.
 I made the hat in 2 separate pieces and then
stitched them together, so I would have spaces
for Mrs. Bufkins ears!
I added a simple decoration.
 Now that I've gotten the actual shape I need, I can
make this mold in one piece and just allow a space for ears
while gluing the straw braid in place.
 How easy is that?
Happy Hat Making!
I have added Mrs. Bufkins to my dolls for sale page.


  1. Mrs. Bufkins is beautiful and to think you used the sewing machine! I love her summer dress and bonnet. You make such lovely bonnets. I would love to try a handmade straw bonnet one day, but it looks difficult.

  2. Mrs. Bufkins is so fine. a very happy rabbit. You did a marvelous job making her, her clothes and that great bonnet. You just make the best things. Her dress is perfect and I do like the fabric and the buttons. So cute.

  3. She is adorable Sherri, I love your choice of colors for her, very Springy.

  4. You are a genius with those hats, lady!

  5. Firstly, this is a special, gorgeous bunny. Secondly, I share with you the pain of making a hat to fit over bunny ears! It's so easy to draw in the design, but much harder to make in three dimensions. Thank you so much for this tutorial.

  6. She is so wonderful!! Thanks for the tutorial on the hats. I may have to try making one but I am sure mine will not look as great as yours!

  7. Mrs. Bufkins couldn't have turned out any finer. I do like her sundress, and cartridge pleated! And what about that hat...lucky little rabbit!


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